Start of the Skyline Drive

Trip Start Sep 23, 2010
Trip End Jul 13, 2012

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Flag of United States  , Virginia
Saturday, September 24, 2011

24th Sept.
Got up around 7.15am, had breakfast and was on the road by just after 8am. Today, we are heading for the Skyline Drive, a scenic drive through Shenandoah National Park, Virginia. After leaving Maryland and passing through West Virginia,we arrive at the north entrance of the park around 10am and head for Dickey Ridge Visitor Centre to get a stamp in our passbooks and information on any short trails we can walk. We then head off along the Skyline Drive with a couple of possible trails in mind. When we started this morning, the sky was blue with a few clouds. After a little while driving the Skyline and stopping at view points, the views became obscured by mist and soon even the road disappeared, so much so, that we didn't see a tunnel until it loomed over us like a black hole! It wasn't so bad, as it would clear when we were lower down and then mist up when we were higher. However, this did kind of put a halt to a couple of mountain trails, but on the bright side, we did walk to a waterfall called Dark Hollow Falls. Apparently it is 70ft high and we are sure in spring, with the snow melt it would be fantastic. It was still beautiful, though. The mist did not stop us wildlife viewing either. It's been a long time since we were caught in a bear jam, but that's what happened. We drove around a corner to find a couple of cars stopped in the road. We originally thought it might be deer, as we had just had one run across in front of us, but no, it was a black bear moving around in a tree. Fantastic! We stopped for lunch at the Byrd Visitor Centre and then, with few more stops at view points, headed out of the park around 4pm. We then headed to the nearest McDonalds in Waynesboro to research our next step and have a sundae. This done we jumped on the I-64 and headed east towards Richmond to find a Walmart, so that tomorrow we could head out towards the coast, giving us a break from forests and mountains for a little while. We stopped in a rest area along the way for dinner and then continued on towards our camp for the night. When we arrived at the Mechanicsville Walmart, unfortunately, we were told that there was no overnight camping allowed, so we hopped back on the I-64 to another rest area further down and parked up. There were no signs here to say we couldn't stay and there were a few trucks around, so we decided to risk it. We then watched an episode of Hustle and went to bed.
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